PHOENIX (AP) — Defense lawyers and the prosecutor in the Jodi Arias trial had a series of sharp exchanges Monday over allegations of attorney misconduct and whether digitally enhanced photos of the victim should be presented for the jury as it decides whether to convict the former waitress and aspiring photographer of murder.
The arguments between prosecutor Juan Martinez and defense lawyer Kirk Nurmi showed how acrimonious the trial has become between the two sides after more than three months of testimony.
Nurmi claimed that the prosecutor committed misconduct by bullying a key defense witness. Martinez used the words "voodoo" and "fantastical" to describe a last-minute defense effort to admit digitally enhanced photos of the victim.
"This isn't second grade. It's a court of law," Nurmi said.
The jury was not present as the judge heard arguments on several issues.
The one that elicited the most colorful response was a defense effort to allow jurors to see enhanced images of Travis Alexander just before he was stabbed and shot to death.
Arias took several photographs of Alexander on the day he was killed in 2008 in his suburban Phoenix home. A defense expert claims that he can see a reflection of a person in the eye of Alexander in one digitally enhanced image. Nurmi said the image shows Arias with both hands on the camera — and not holding a knife that she used to kill Alexander.
The splotchy image is impossible to interpret with the naked eye, and Martinez ripped the defense team for trying to introduce it as evidence. He said he sees what he thinks is Alexander's dog in the reflection. He said other people might see completely different things, whether it's different breeds of dogs or even gophers.